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1383475 Posts in 66144 Topics- by 58569 Members - Latest Member: RunReadySoftware

October 20, 2020, 09:01:37 AM

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TIGSource ForumsCommunityDevLogsStartron (The procedurally generated ASCII space sandbox)
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Author Topic: Startron (The procedurally generated ASCII space sandbox)  (Read 4176 times)
Rogod
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« Reply #20 on: July 27, 2020, 01:26:35 PM »

Update v0.32
Grass, trees & bugs! (Also an intro...) Gomez


List of updates/fixes
  • Added an intro animation! (It may get tweaked over time so don't get too attached Ninja)

  • Fixed the menu sometimes not letting you play after generating the cosmos

  • Fixed the Captain's log not saving the last line you were on

  • Fixed some build actions being triggered by just typing in the Captain's log

  • The Captain's log is now available in space stations! (So it's actually useful for making shopping lists n things Tongue )

  • Moved the Captain's log out the way of the build instructions so you can see what you're doing while making notes

  • Added a previously absent warning when trying to buy something you can't afford

  • Improved all the lighting and some characters for minerals, products & structures

  • Added grass and trees to planets so they're all pretty now :3


« Last Edit: September 17, 2020, 04:24:19 AM by Rogod » Logged

Rogod
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« Reply #21 on: July 31, 2020, 01:10:41 PM »

Update v0.33
That's no moon... Gomez


List of updates/fixes
  • Added a load of space station variants so they don't all look the same now!

  • Added more prefixes and suffixes to use for generating random names of things

  • Fixed being able to build all over things you shouldn't be able to

  • Fixed a load of automation bugs regarding queuing

  • Made asteroids more rocky so there are places to build (and also allowed roads/conveyors/conduits to be built between rocks while ensuring buildings must be built on rocks)

  • Added rough lighting for asteroids and space stations (don't get your hopes up, it's nothing too fancy Tongue)


« Last Edit: September 17, 2020, 04:24:26 AM by Rogod » Logged

JobLeonard
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« Reply #22 on: August 02, 2020, 04:24:40 AM »

> Nothing too fancy

Even a tiny bit of polish can go a long way though  Smiley
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Rogod
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« Reply #23 on: August 02, 2020, 07:38:04 AM »

Aye it just gives the hint of 3-dimensionality without actually requiring lighting calculations or geometry. Blink

Still, plenty of other things I intend to polish as features are added and fleshed out. Gentleman
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Rogod
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« Reply #24 on: August 06, 2020, 02:56:55 PM »

Update v0.34
It moved when I wasn't looking :O Gomez


List of updates/fixes
  • Planets can now sometimes generate with cities on them (the planet gets called something less generic when this happens) - Cities are useful because dwellings are expensive to make when setting up new colonies

  • Storage yards can now collect resources even while you're off in another system (resource deltas are tracked then applied with a multiplier on arrival)

  • Entities generated in solar systems now vary depending on the system type - e.g. space stations don't generate near neutron stars (because radiation) and black holes have lots of debris around them without any planets (because they'd get all torn up Sad )

  • Rocks are now easier to distinguish from one another because they get assigned a letter in their name - e.g. "Rocks B"

  • Rocks can generate with lone dwellings on them for the same reasons cities were introduced to planets (makes things a little more accessible and the cosmos feel more populated)

  • Fixed a bug where the lighting calculations on rocks could crash the game

  • Also tidied up a bunch of large code pieces (particularly the intro which was just hacked together before)


« Last Edit: September 17, 2020, 04:24:32 AM by Rogod » Logged

Rogod
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« Reply #25 on: August 16, 2020, 05:52:45 AM »

Update v0.35
All new graphics! Gomez


List of updates/fixes
  • New space station artwork!

  • Planets, moons & suns with a single block sticking out the top and bottom have been fixed (because it looked really dumb)

  • Ice-caps have been added to planets and moons (they generate larger the further the body is from the system's centre)

  • Collecting resources now accumulate in the message at the bottom (so you don't have to keep swapping back to the cargo bay to see how much of something you've got) (visible in the last picture^)

  • Ice has been added to rocks too! (For realism Wink )

  • Fixed being able to build underneath other buildings

  • Fixed being able to create land outside of planets by demolishing space Big Laff

  • Shuffled the external resource files around so the game directories are less cluttered


« Last Edit: September 17, 2020, 04:24:53 AM by Rogod » Logged

vdapps
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« Reply #26 on: August 21, 2020, 05:32:14 AM »

Heh, nice looking, I'll give it a try definitely (love this unusual art and space environment).

Seems we have it reverted, I love C# and definitely not friend with Java. Grin
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Rogod
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« Reply #27 on: August 21, 2020, 08:46:46 AM »

Don't get me wrong, C# is great, but I find Java is a little less reckless when it comes to coding patterns - with C# there's just so many inconsistent rules and ways to do things as well as needless data structures that I just find bothersome. (Java will always be my first love :3 - It did after all get me a job as a programmer lol)
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vdapps
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« Reply #28 on: August 21, 2020, 03:02:52 PM »

I tried it, man's that nerdy! ASCII art is brutal, respect for that.

Btw, using .NET Core is intentional? To have better portability to possible other platforms later?

Cause I was not able to run game. Only after running from command line, I found error in console that .NET Core Runtime is missing on my computer, so I downloaded it and installed. It's not by default with Win 10, so users can facing that app will not start.

As it's just ASCII game, targeting against "normal" .NET Framework can be better as it's embedded in Windows automatically.
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Rogod
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« Reply #29 on: August 21, 2020, 04:25:08 PM »

Right, I hadn't noticed a difference. - I will investigate switching to .NET Framework if .NET Core doesn't come with Windows by default.

I just chose the simplest to get a console up and running.

EDIT: It appears I don't have the option to use .NET Framework, just lots of versions of .NET Core and if I swap the output type from Console Application to Windows Application, it no longer starts.

I guess I need to recreate the exact error and figure out a way to provide whatever .dlls it thinks it's missing.

EDIT2: Ok so I forced it to use .NET Framework 4.8, this killed the music player but everything else is working as expected, so just need to swap the music player out or find how to get WMPLib to work in .NET Framework and I'll release a new version. - I hadn't realised this was so incompatible with people's PCs - I figured .NET Core was the more minimal solution so would work in more places Cry
« Last Edit: August 21, 2020, 04:44:25 PM by Rogod » Logged

JobLeonard
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« Reply #30 on: August 22, 2020, 02:09:38 AM »

In your defense, it's named .NET Core, so that's kind of the implicit promise in the name.
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vdapps
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« Reply #31 on: August 22, 2020, 07:31:35 AM »

Yeah, it's confusing as it can make impression that it's more "Core" so more default. Story of .NET is, that it started for Windows only, with .NET Framework containing many Windows only specific stuff (WinForms, WPF, etc..). Thus, .NET Framework comes in one package with Windows and targeting .NET Framework means app being runnable easier on Windows, without installing prerequisites.

Just later, Microsoft realized that many parts of .NET Framework can be easily platform agnostic. Items of importance were mainly network/server side stuff (domain where Java was always undisputed king). Thus, they extracted it to .NET Core and made run-times for Windows, OS X, Linux, etc.., so .NET can expand beyond Windows platform. On bright side, .NET Core apps can be easily ported to any platform where run-time exists, on downside, .NET Core run-time is not the default part of Windows, can be downloaded from MS here:
https://dotnet.microsoft.com/download/dotnet-core/3.1
.NET Core run-time installer for console only app is just around 25MB, so no big deal. Unless you find better solution, you can just ship it with your app. Or give instructions to user, if they'll have troubles running app.

To have the the best compatibility on Windows, I guess the best is to target .NET Framework 4.5. As .NET Framework 4.5 is part of Windows 8 and newer and there's no big difference between .NET Framework 4.5 and newer versions. In your example, .NET Framework 4.8 is packaged automatically only from Windows 10 1903 and newer. Users which don't update their Win10 regularly can be without .NET Framework 4.8. See table here:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/.NET_Framework_version_history

I'm 100% sure that it's possible to make console app also targeting .NET Framework 4.5. I tried it in my Visual Studio 2017 and I have it there (New Project -> Visual C# -> Get Started -> Console App (there I was able to choose .NET Framework 4.5 as target). Maybe it depends on your VS installation. However, I can't help very much with music though as I don't know nothing about WMPLib. Concerned

I'm using XAudio from DXTK library (it's C++, I have C#/C++ bridging in my app and rendering/sounds I have in C++, while all game logic I have in C#). Previously, I used NAudio library for sounds and music. It's pure C#, you can ship DLL with your binaries. Maybe it can be of help to you. Check here:
https://github.com/naudio/NAudio
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Rogod
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« Reply #32 on: August 25, 2020, 10:19:29 AM »

So after mulling it over, in the interests of keeping things as compatible as possible and ensuring I don't need to re-do things that already work, I've decided to simply include a read-me file with instructions on getting .NET Core runtimes if people have problems.

I've also done this because I have already had at least one person ask me if there'll be a Linux compatible version one day so without realising it I've already gotten most of the way to providing that without even needing a Java port - which I may not even do now.

v0.36 will just continue where I left off with new gameplay development as usual; nothing fundamental will be changing regarding .NET Smiley

Thanks for the heads up though vdapps
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Rogod
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« Reply #33 on: August 27, 2020, 02:54:12 PM »

Update v0.36
Even more new graphics! Gomez


List of updates/fixes
  • All materials, resources & products now have a unique icon to help visually differentiate things and clarify what the heck is going on Wink
    Drawing 52 icons in the very limited Startron-specific drawing tool took some doing...

  • There's a readme file now included with every release going forward to explain what to do when the game invariably doesn't start up on a modern computer Waaagh!

  • Resources can now be beamed down to planets, moons and asteroids from the cargo bay! (This'll become important for splitter-conveyors in v0.37)

  • Fixed a couple of typos and inaccuracies in the cosmic database

  • Offset the background in the space station rooms from eachother so it feels a little more 3D as you navigate around


« Last Edit: September 17, 2020, 04:25:01 AM by Rogod » Logged

Rogod
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« Reply #34 on: August 30, 2020, 09:29:54 AM »

Of course I didn't actually show most of the new icons again so here they are Gomez

Yellow being raw resources, red being processed materials and blue being manufactured products
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JobLeonard
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« Reply #35 on: August 30, 2020, 11:59:30 AM »

Nice!

Could you maybe make the borders have a slightly different shape too? Like rounded, square and uh... something else? Makes it more color blind friendly and easier to quickly categorize in general
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Rogod
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« Reply #36 on: August 30, 2020, 12:13:48 PM »

Hmm, that is a good idea, although the rounded borders is simply the style of the UI ingame and on the website.

That being said, I could probably do some kind of notch system around the edge to show the tier (1 notch for resources, 2 notches for materials, 3 notches for products).

Dunno though - I may still experiment with different shapes though; these pictures don't really need to be rounded, it was just something to make them less square and boring.
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JobLeonard
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« Reply #37 on: August 31, 2020, 01:57:36 AM »

Thinking about it will probably improve the final design no matter what you decide Smiley
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Rogod
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« Reply #38 on: September 03, 2020, 12:00:38 PM »

Update v0.37
Compound materials! Gomez


List of updates/fixes
  • Refineries will detect mixed resources for creating compounds (so if it's processing an Ird and sees a Silitz is about to come in on the same conveyor, it'll process the 2 together into Silird). My hope is that eventually compounds will play more of a role in the cosmos, but there are a few fancier things to develop before I go making more materials to mess with :D

  • New controller tiles can be placed adjacent to splitter conveyors to control the flow precisely. Beaming down a resource onto the controller from the cargo bay will dictate that this resource will always go left (with respect to the incoming direction) on the splitter while everything else will go right. Splitters without adjacent controllers will still flip-flop back and forth between the 2 directions

  • Spread out the room-prompts in the space station to feel a bit more fun and interactive (like one of those activity-room games from the 90s :D)

  • Fixed a bug where 2 conveyors merging will destroy one of the materials if their timing is in sync (now it queues up properly as you'd expect)

  • Added a new title on the menu (I just felt it was time)

I am aware I didn't address the above shape-differentiation for resource/material/product icons; I plan to get to this in v0.38 Wink


« Last Edit: September 17, 2020, 04:25:26 AM by Rogod » Logged

vdapps
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« Reply #39 on: September 04, 2020, 02:37:37 PM »

This 3D room looks cool given it's everything in console  Cool
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